TOP 10 BEACHES
TO EXPERIENCE THIS SUMMER IN ASIA
by: Lisa Crawford
As the temperatures start to sizzle, you may be looking for a retreat from the heat this summer. And there is no better time than now to head out of town. Why not set your travel plans on Asia? With pristine beaches at affordable prices, you are sure to find the perfect vacation. Here are our top ten beach destinations in Asia.
KO PHA NGAN
Thailand makes it on our list, yet again, with Ko Pha Ngan. Popular with the backpacking crowd, this beautiful island is known for its Full Moon party on Haad Rin Beach. This all night beach party happens right around the time of each full moon. That means that around 13 times a year, visitors can expect to party it up Ko Pha Ngan style. Music, drinks and fun activities make this spot a tourism “must see.” If partying isn’t quite your vibe, Ko Pha Ngan houses several serene bays, inlets, beaches and coves. Quaint and tasty dining options also line the beachfront street in the fishing village of Chalok Lam on the north shore. No matter if your vacation style is party animal or laid back relaxer, Ko Pha Ngan will have something to offer that will keep you smiling.
Known for its excellent surfing, Kuta, Bali is one of Indonesia’s first tourist spots. The long, sandy beach has several hotels, restaurants and bars to keep tourists accommodated, but the real draw is out in the ocean. Surfers from all over the world travel to Kuta to ride its magnificent waves. Not into water sports? That’s OK. The adorable beachside town will offer a fun, yet relaxing getaway for those looking for some R&R with a nice view.
Located in the Philippines, Bohol is a popular beach destination where tourists can take part in activities like diving and dolphin watching. Bohol has been named one of the top ten places to go diving in the world. In addition to water sports; Bohol is well-known for its Chocolate Hills, large limestone formations that visitors love to climb to take part in the islands natural beauty.
The coastal Sri Lankan town, Bentota, is home to Bentota Beach and Paradise Island. The white sandy beaches offer a tranquil spot to lay your head and enjoy the sun. But Bentota is about a fraction of the cost to visit as many other destinations. The calm seas make this area great for water skiing, deep-sea fishing and snorkeling. The area is also very safe for swimming and a great spot for families with young children to vacation. Visitors enjoy spending time on the legendary River Bentara, which flows into the Indian Ocean. Here you can find water sports galore to keep you and your family happily busy.
The Vietnamese resort city, Nha Trang, is quite popular for those interested in marine life. The marine reserve offers visitors a great place to scuba dive. Backpackers from all over the world flock to Nha Trang for this reason alone. Nha Trang Bay is known to be one of the most breathtaking bays in the world. The popular Sea Festival is held every two years and took place on June 10th of this year. Thousands of artists participate in events such as workshops, sports contests and seafood cooking. The festival takes place along the river Nha Trang and attracts quite a crowd.
Malaysia hosts this magnificent island known for its rainforest nature reserve and coral reef dive sites. If you are familiar with pop culture, this beach is the very same one depicted in the popular 1958 movie, South Pacific. It has been named one of the world’s most beautiful islands and is definitely worth a trip to see. If you want a little adventure in your vacation, many visitors like to hike Gunung Kajang, a 1,000 meter high mountain offering spectacular views.
Another popular Thai beach town is Ao Nang. If you are more of an active vacationer, you may like all that Ao Nang has to offer. Here visitors can take part in long-tail boat tours, scuba diving and rock climbing. Railay Beach is a popular spot for those looking for relaxation and a beautiful view. The small peninsula is accessible only by boat, which adds a sense of excitement and adventure to your trip.
Located off the east coast of Kra Isthmus, Thailand, Koh Samui is one of Asia’s most beautiful and luxurious beach destinations. With over 50 daily flights arriving from all over the world, it is no surprise that tourists are flocking to this tropical hot spot. The affordable beachside bungalows are a hit for many beach goers looking for a relaxed getaway, while the lively atmosphere of Chaweng Beach attracts those looking for more of a scene. Another impressive part of Koh Samui is the Ang Thong Marine National Park. Here, nature lovers can enjoy a real tropical island experience.
Another Thailand favorite, Pattaya offers so much more than just laying out on the beach. This fishing town has become one of Thailand’s top tourist attractions with various activities offered within a stone’s throw of each other. From golf, to theme parks to zoos and underwater corals, Pattaya will offer something for each member of your family. Looking for spiritual guidance on your vacation? The Sanctuary of Truth stands not far from the center village and shares the concept that human civilization is here in part due to philosophical and religious truth. No matter your taste, Pattaya is sure to have something to keep you busy!
KO PHI PHI DON
If you are looking for pristine scuba diving and snorkeling, Thailand’s Ko Phi Phi Don will be a great destination for you. This non-volcanic island is made mostly of limestone and houses several luxurious resorts. The serene beaches attract tourists from Europe, China, Japan and Southeast Asia. The gorgeous reefs draw many to take their vacation underwater to explore the unique and exotic sea life. No matter your reason for visiting, we are sure that the white sandy beaches will definitely call your name.